Shannon is a 16 year old from Maryland. She enjoys writing, is pro recycling, and loves the Jonas Brothers.
It seems to be getting closer and closer lately. Whenever we do thinking exercises in English or Ethics, the question “Where do you think you’ll be five years from now?” usually comes up, and someone always answers with “I see myself happily married.” When you think about it, five years really isn’t a long time. Five years from now I’ll be twenty one. For some people twenty one means legal bar hopping, but apparently for others, it means being forever committed to another person.
Especially with celebs like Bristol Palin getting married to their teenage boyfriends, the popularity of marriage has spiked dramatically.
So what do we think? Well, all I can give you is the perspective of yours truly: (Forgive me if my opinion seems somewhat cynical.)
Honestly, I’m not sure what to think about people marrying so young. I think commitment is something that is taken dangerously lightly in this day and age. People of all ages go into marriage with a ring on one hand and a backup escape plan in the other. That’s why the divorce rate is so ridiculously high.
It seems to me that many of the young couples that get married are naive. They think that marriage is like the relationships that we see on television and in movies–completely ‘lovie-dovie’; all sunshine and ice cream kisses; laying in the street, fingers laced, toying with death as you watch the traffic lights flick from red to yellow to green. They forget to mention that being married means being legally bound to another person. Having to deal with them and their issues on a daily basis, regardless of how your day went. Having to work with them to keep the relationship fun and interesting.
People are constantly growing and changing, especially when they’re young and are still trying to figure out who they are as human beings. The likelihood that two people can go through this type of self-discovery while successfully co-existing with a mate just seems very slim.
To me, marrying young seems to be the equivalent of throwing your childhood away. I just can’t understand why someone would willingly put their dreams on hold to work on a relationship that has a fifty percent chance of failing. Young couples often have to give up on certain things, certain experiences, certain opportunities that are likely to only come around once.
And why? Because they’re in love? What do teens know of love, really? Can we really distinguish the difference between love and lust at this age? Can we truely fall in love? Do soul mates exist?
Can teens know the answers to these questions?
My answer: I don’t know.
Youth is something that can’t be repeated. As each day passes we grow a little older and lose a little bit more of the innocence that we once possess as children. Marriage only speeds up that
process, so why rush it?